Exclusive: Mustafa Ali Discusses His Indo-Pakistani Roots, Why He Didn't Get To Represent India In WWE & More
In case you missed the first part of my conversation with the amazing Mustafa Ali, I recommend that you check this out. I had a chance to ask him a few more questions, and the eloquent Mr. Ali had much to say in his graceful, inspiring way.
While the 205 Live superstar plays a Pakistani character on screen, I did not know that Ali is also of Indian origin, something that I'm sure that a lot of our readers aren't aware of as well. Here is a glimpse of the remainder of our conversation:
What has shifting to a brand new day meant for the 205 Live brand?
Ali: If you ever dissect 205, take a hard look at it, it's always been a fantastic show. Regardless of what's been going on, the wrestling has been the best not only in the company but on the planet. The only critique if you really dissect it is that the crowd isn't into it, the crowd doesn't care. And the difficulty with that was that time slot.
We were on after the crowd had watched too much wrestling already. And it happens to the best of us. You can watch some pay-per-views and you can find some grade A quality performances but the people are exhausted.
I think it's a good move. We've already seen a difference in the crowd reaction. It's the same quality of wrestling but with a lot more investment from the crowd. Because the crowd that watches at home on the WWE Network, the love that they show is online.
The question is how do we get the live crowd more invested in these guys and these matches? I like it. As far as I can tell, it's made a big difference. I'm very very happy with it.
Do you have a message for your fans in India and Pakistan?
Ali: A lot of people don't know that I'm actually half Indian. In the Cruiserweight Classic, I represented Pakistan, but the full background is that my mom is from New Delhi and my dad is from Karachi, Pakistan and I was born in the States. I also have great ties to India. I've been to India several times as a kid...Bangalore, Delhi.
I feel like a lot of Indian fans don't know about my Indian background, so it's funny online that a lot of fans call me this Pakistani dude. No, I'm Indian too (laughs). And the reason for that is at The Cruiserweight Classic they already had two guys representing India...the Bollywood Boys.
So, they didn't want three guys with the same background. I'm Pakistani, Indian and I'm American.
At the end of the day, I love the fact that I get to bring two countries together. No one's different. They're all the same. I love the fact that I'm in the position where I can bring people together.